PA Works just makes everything so gorgeous
I lead a pretty boring life, so it’s hard to come up with things to put here in these introductions. But I’m glad that this is a short work week, that’s for sure, so let’s mention that!
The Big City
Just a little worse for wear
I think that we finally get to see the results of some growth for Hikari, and even if he’s still a bit volatile, he definitely seemed a lot better this episode. But he’s not going to go crawling back to his father, even if he doesn’t want to impose on Itaru. I liked this more slice-of-life episode, with less overall angst, and more just normal kid worries on the part of Miuna. She’s trying to figure out a way to welcome Akari, and also to try to put her past antagonization of Akari behind them.
On the way to the city
The recognition of the sea people in even the bigger city was an interesting thing. Of course, you’d have some of that, but it was nice to see it, and even ended up giving the city a bit more of a welcoming feel than Oshiooshi. But even then, it’s a daunting experience, and they end up running around looking for Miuna’s present, especially after finding out that the expensive pendant she wanted to get isn’t available. It’s really one of those things that she knew what she wanted to get, but just couldn’t find it.
Showing She Cares by Overthinking
Miuna finds the perfect gift
You almost feel like Miuna’s trying too hard, trying to be the person who thinks about everyone. That manifests itself in her carrying around multiple bottles of seawater in case someone gets too dried out. And she’s obviously laboring, but shoulders her self-imposed burden, and when she fears Hikari is in trouble, drenches him. But it actually does well in lightening the mood, especially as the others appreciate her gesture for what it is. And even though they can’t find the right present to buy, everyone pitches in to search for the right things for Miuna to make into a present from the ocean.
Separation, but working on it
The other person who might be overthinking things is still Chisaki, who finally gets a chance to talk to Hikari. And she finally confronts Hikari’s feelings about Manaka, to learn that Hikari is more interested in Manaka’s happiness than his own. And if she decides to leave the sea, he’ll support her, just like he’s supporting Akari. The fact that he has decided on a position is really the indicator to me that he’s matured a little bit, more than the actual position he will stick with.
I just love this look Manaka gives Tsumugu
The other big thing to talk about is Akari and Itaru’s desire to buck tradition. Not content with having his second wife be exiled the way his first wife is, Itaru wants to actually try to gain the acceptance of Shioshishio in his marriage to Akari. You would think that he, of all people, would already understand the hurdles therein, but he seems adamant that he wants to try. And the idea of ‘properly’ takes hold in Chisaki as well, who thinks she’s an awful girl because of her feelings for Hikari, but I think she’ll finally figure out that it’s not wrong to hope that Hikari likes her, or even to hope that Manaka finds happiness elsewhere. And maybe Chisaki’s actually seeing that what she thought was set in stone just a few months before, that the boy she liked would never be hers because he’s with Manaka, is more like sand on the ocean floor.
Another image I just liked
I always like when a show becomes more ‘slice-of-life’ and shows us growth through normal things. And while there was maybe a bit too much urgency on Miuna’s part about finding a gift, this was a good opportunity for everyone to learn more about their world, and for us to learn more about the characters. Not only Chisaki and Hikari, but seeing a lot more of why Manaka is enthralled by Tsumugu, which I think made it more plain why the show is pointing those two together.
The big unknown is the falling saltflake snow. Why is it on land? What is the sea god doing, or is it even doing anything besides just being a passenger like everyone else. This interesting world is going to be changing, apparently, and we’ll just have to see where it goes.